Our first full day at ASMS, and what a day!

Apparently an ideal blog post should be focussed on a specific topic. That’s going to be hard with all there is to share from last night’s Opening Ceremony and the first full day at ASMS here in downtown Salt Lake City. Here goes…

It was a busy opening night. We went to our booth expecting a gentle introduction but ended up still showing new features in Progenesis LC-MS while they turned out the lights in the exhibition hall. We spent as much time catching up with existing customers as meeting potential new ones and I spent over an hour talking with David Friedman about his ideas for helping the quantitative intact proteomics community. More on that later and how we’re getting involved.

opening night at ASMS The quiet before the storm on the opening night of ASMS
(L-R Martin Wells, Ian Morns, Mark Bennett)

After a rain soaked night, we woke up this morning ready for the first full day with snow falling! We started with the Quantitative Intact Proteomics Oral session that ended with a great presentation from Michelle Cilia at USDA-ARS on how she’s finding a lot of interesting biomarkers with some well designed experiments and Progenesis SameSpots. Quite a surprise at a “mass spec conference”! I met Michelle afterwards and she told me it was the Correlation Analysis and “tagging” features that were the secret of her success in the 2D DIGE data analysis.

Later, I caught up with Scott Goulding from the University of Colorado School of Medicine at his poster. Scott is one of our Progenesis LC-MS users and he talked me through some really interesting results from proteome analysis of Hippocampus in Homer2 knockout mice, which showed alcohol aversion, and Wild Type mice, which show alcohol addiction. He had quantified then identified over 30 proteins, which could lead to a greater understanding of addiction and ways to treat it. He had a light-hearted picture drawing attention to his serious work on addition studies, so I’m sharing a copy here…

drunk mice “Wild Type” mice living up to their name
(image courtesy of Google Images)

I also spotted another poster using Progenesis LC-MS, presented by Marc Gentzel from the MPI-CBG in Dresden Germany, on “Label-free Quantification of Protein Co-Immunopreciptiation Experiments”. PS: we’ll put up as many of these as we can in the posters section of the website after ASMS.

The day ended for me at the Quantitative Intact Proteomics workshop. This was an interactive session hosted by Julian Whitelegge and David Friedman that stimulated a lot of discussion on things we should all consider when running proteomics analysis, regardless of the technique, many of which echo the message of the Fixing Proteomics Campaign. Kathryn Lilley asked the audience how they decided on the the number of biological replicates for their experiments and a show of hands revealed these interesting results:

  1. Sample Availability (20 “hands”)
  2. Available time on the analytical instrument (20 “hands”)
  3. Statistical basis/power analysis predictions (15 “hands”)
  4. Financial restrictions (3 “hands”)
  5. Patience (1 “hand”)

The rest of the discussion could take up a whole blog post on its own, so I’ll save that for another day. If you’re interested in joining the Quantitative Intact Proteomics discussion group, you can request to join here.

There’s a talk and at least one poster showing Progenesis LC-MS in action tomorrow, so I’ll do more “on-the-spot interviews” with our users, asking them to share how they’re using our software to best effect.

But for now it’s time for bed at the end of a looong day. I’m crying off the hospitality suite entertainment tonight in favour of a good night’s sleep, so g’night and more dispatches from ASMS tomorrow.

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